ASPIRE (Asociación para Inversión y Empleo, Inc.) was created in 1983 in the Dominican Republic, as a social management organisation with Christian principles, that provides empowerment tools for the comprehensive transformation of the people involved, modelling initiatives committed to living well.
The unique aspect of ASPIRE is the commitment of its collaborators towards service and excellence. In fact, they work on improving social and financial education (SFE) so that it the most vulnerable will be included: especially women, children and people with disabilities. They provide them with training and help them in organisational processes in financial matters and transparency.
Through their work, they have formed alliances to strengthen training. For example, they work with the Fundación Reservas del País to train women in the organisation of the financial records of their businesses.
ASPIRE decided partnering with Aflatoun due to the methodology used to address children and adolescents. The approach of Aflatoun allows them to provide children and youth with tools that have a real impact and can help them becoming owners of their actions.
ASPIRE has been using the Aflatoun curriculum and the Aflatoun methodologies to prepare clubs and social entrepreneurship activities. ASPIRE believes that together with Aflatoun they can help empowering children and youth, giving them the necessary tools to get to know themselves and others, making life plans, knowing and defending their rights and those of their community, and undertaking actions to take care of the environment.
Social Enterprise for the Community in Cancino
An inspiring story comes from a group of children aged 6-14 years old, from the Cancino neighbourhood in Santo Domingo. The children met in a room provided by the community leader realised that there was a common interest in working on some issues that afflict the community (garbage in the streets, young people who do not study or work and commit crimes in order to make ends meet, the lack of drinking water in the houses, etc.).
Therefore, when the children started learning about social entrepreneurship, they chose to do something to help their community. Within their possibilities, they decided that it was feasible to clean up a vacant lot that criminals used to commit illegal activities. The neighbourhood council talked with the owners of the land and decided together to clean it and keep it clean.